Good Tuesday morning to all. I pray you are off to a great start today. Please see today’s message below:
September 21, 2021
Just a few weeks ago I suddenly noticed an array of butterflies flying from one plant to another in the flower garden. If you ever take time to just watch the butterflies closely, you will begin to observe how beautiful they really are. The colors are almost breathtaking, for they come in many shades, sizes, shapes, etc. I began to wonder why they were going from one plant to the other or flying as if they were attaching themselves to each other. After doing a little research, I realized the male butterfly was probably looking for a female butterfly for the purpose of mating. The reason they were landing on the leaves of the flowers was to lay their eggs.
Growing up on a farm provided opportunities to watch butterflies in large numbers. There were times we would chase the butterflies, catch them and put them in jars with holes in the top of the jar so they could get some oxygen. We would collect an assortment of butterflies during the day and lightening bugs at night. It was a young farm boy’s dream to collect a variety of butterflies and show them off. It was part of our day of joy and excitement on the farm.
In one of our science classes in high school or maybe even elementary school, I can remember the teacher using this big word, metamorphosis, and defining it as follows: Change in form, shape, structure, or substance transformation. When a metamorphosis occurs, a person or thing develops and changes into something completely different. The teacher would use a butterfly to demonstrate how metamorphosis works. You know the story. The butterfly begins life as an egg, emerges as a caterpillar, and then goes through a complete change in body form during development.
Let’s revisit the definition in the previous paragraph and read again part of the definition. When a metamorphosis occurs, a person or thing develops and changes into something completely different. Think about how we as people go through metamorphosis while on our spiritual journey. We were all born into sin, but hopefully and prayerfully we have transformed or changed into something very different. As you read this message, I hope you are able to say you have experienced metamorphosis or a transformation has taken place and now portrays you as a beautiful human being just like the butterfly. In other words, you have been transformed into a genuine and authentic Christian that others admire and appreciate.
One of the requirements of a candidate pursuing ordained ministry is to articulate his/her calling into ministry. My response has always been, “It has been a metamorphosis process.” Before I became a minister, I first had to become saved, a believer in Jesus and then a professed Christian.
Once I became a Christian, there were opportunities provided that caused me to mature and develop, just like the butterfly, into something totally different and beautiful. Over time, hopefully, we have transformed into this wonderful and magnificent being that God has intended for us to become. It is a point and time in life that we realize we are no longer the poor wretches we used to be in life.
The apostle Paul puts it this way in Romans 12: 2: “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” This change is evidenced by the renewing of our minds, when an inward spiritual transformation takes place and is evidenced by our outward actions. When this transformation takes place in our lives, we are able to reflect on our past and feel good about how we have overcome our sinful nature and now we are drawn nearer to God. The apostle Paul further writes in Romans 8:9, “You, however, are controlled not by the sinful nature but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ.”
There are four characters in the Bible, Moses, Rahab, David and Paul, who always get my attention when speaking about transformations and conversion. Even though they were notorious sinners, God changed them into something very unique and special. I love the words of David in Psalm 32:1-2, “Oh, what joy for those whose disobedience is forgiven, whose sin is put out of sight! Yes, what joy for those whose record the Lord has cleared of guilt, whose lives are lived in complete honesty.”
In closing, do you feel good about the changes God has made in your life? If so, soar like a butterfly.
Not a sermon, just my thoughts!
Robert Earl Slade, Pastor